New page called – Tools

Bismillah alhamdulillah.

I have added a page called TOOLS. You can access it from the tabs at the top of the blog and it will give you the links I use on a daily basis during my practice.

Here is the direct link https://drtaqi.wordpress.com/tools/.

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Negative drug trials

Bismillah, alhamdulillah.

Positivity is worth more than its weight in gold when it comes to trial results supporting a particular drug. But what happened to all the negative trials – that were started but never reported. Do we get to know that they exist in the first place?

The Guardian has an article by Ben Goldacre called ‘Drug trial secrecy leaves us dependent on blind faith‘  which is a reminder of the less than transparent world of pharmaceuticals that we live in today.


Dementia

Bismillah, alhamdulillah.

Heard a nice podcast from the BBC on Dementia. Take home points:

  • 35 million have it world wide.
  • Singing and music may help but patients point out it is contact with others that matters.
  • Goa psychiatrist, Dr Amit Dias, has a new idea: Sangath Dementia Project with a community outreach project for dementia.
  • Angst of relatives who promised to keep their elderly relatives at home but who need to send them to an institution.
  • Simple ideas from Dementia House: lighting should be increased as yellowing of the cornea causes difficulty in depth perception. Long life bulbs decrease in their luminosity with time and need regular changing! A telephone where the quick dial buttons have pictures of relatives rather than names. Infra red sensor connected near the bed and to an in-house pager, if they wake up at night someone can come to assist them. A little door opening audio prompt that says ‘Don’t forget your keys’. A clock that gives the time, the date, the day, the month and the time of day as in evening or morning and the year.

Palliative care in the NHS – the USA effect

Bismillah, alhamdulillah.

The dying light of NHS care, a comment piece in the Guardian describing the last few days of the writers wife as she lay dying in her home. Initially impressed by the charity Marie Curie and their hospice care the husband then notes how things began to deteriorate and traces the hand of US corporates in the background:

Then the carers began coming late. The person expected at 10pm on Christmas Eve arrived at 12.15 on Christmas morning. Apparently her managers, truculent people unwilling to listen to suggestions, had not organised the minicab from her south London home. On a subsequent evening two carers arrived, each claiming to have been sent by their managers. The NHS had, I later gathered, been obliged to take the second-class service offered by a disorganised offshoot of some US corporation: unsurprisingly its low standards allowed it to undercut Marie Curie’s bid for the work. It seemed bizarre that the NHS was manoeuvred by an aggressive privatisation lobby into accepting a clearly inferior service from a company run from a country incapable of organising a health service for its own citizens.

The Ever Widening Role of Family Medicine

Bismillah, alhamdulillah.

In an article on the recent events in Libya a Guardian article stated:

Most were rushed to an ill-equipped medical clinic at the centre of this low-set concrete town, where overwrought staff did the best they could to tend to battle wounds that were clearly not in the family medicine handbook.

 

A Simplified Guide to Clinical Pathways

Bismillah, alhamdulillah

You may have come across the term Clinical Pathway and wondered what exactly they were. If you are a doctor you might at first think this is another word for Clinical Guideline but this is not actually the case. Having being victim of the same confusion I decided to read up on the issue and write myself a simplified guide to crystallise the concepts behind the idea.

Clinical pathways have come from industrial quality management from the 1950s from the aviation and construction industry. They developed a method to “analyze the involved tasks in completing a given project, especially the time needed to complete each task, and identifying the minimum time needed to complete the total project.” (Wikipedia) Then two nurses, Karen Zander & Kathleen Bower, introduced the same concepts to
health care in the mid 80’s. Ever since then health systems have been trying to introduce the concept of clinical pathways to hospitals.

Read more